The weekend’s results locked in Harvard’s seventh-place seeding in the ECAC, confirming that the team will be travelling to face No. 3/4 Colgate next weekend in a best of three series in the ECAC Quarterfinals.
HARVARD 1, CLARKSON 3
Harvard (13-14-2, 10-10-2 ECAC) dropped its regular season finale 3-1 versus the Golden Knights (29-4-1, 19-3) in Potsdam on Saturday night. This result ensured that the Crimson didn’t overtake Princeton for sixth place in the ECAC, thus killing any chance of an Ivy-League matchup versus No. 5 Cornell in the Quarterfinals.
Clarkson got on the board early, scoring on the first shift. With just 17 seconds played, the Golden Knights lit the lamp through Savannah Harmon after her shot slipped just past the glove of Harvard’s sophomore goalie, Beth Larcom. This was Clarkson’s quickest goal of the season, as well as the quickest goal that the Crimson have conceded this season.
Harvard was outshot 30-16 overall on the night, with both teams going 0-4 on power plays. Larcom ended with 27 saves in goal, making crucial stops throughout the night to keep the Crimson in the game.
The Golden Knights added a pair of scores in the second frame, all but ruining Harvard’s chances of taking the two points against the nation’s No. 2 team. Junior forward Bradley Fusco pulled one back for the Crimson before the end of the second, but Clarkson never looked in much danger of losing its lead. Despite the scoreline, Harvard defended well overall throughout the night, their defence combining for 17 blocked shots on the night, with freshman defender Emma Buckles leading the team with 5.
“They scored on our first shift, and that was kind of a wakeup call for us.” said junior captain and forward Kate Hallett. “From there on out, we really played well with them, and given that they’re ranked second in the nation, I think we have a lot of which to be proud.”
HARVARD 2, ST. LAWRENCE 1
Harvard defeated St. Lawrence (18-10-4, 14-6-2), 2-1 on Friday night. Freshman forward Becca Gilmore continued her impressive run, scoring both goals for the Crimson in the win.
Harvard were rewarded with a win for a disciplined performance against one of the nation’s top teams. The Crimson was penalized just once, when freshman forward Keely Moy was called for checking near the end of the second frame. 40 saves from Larcom also allowed Harvard to stay competitive and eventually edge out the Saints on the night, which was the Crimson’s first win against ranked opposition since February 2016.
Harvard broke the deadlock 8:46 into the second period, after Gilmore followed up on a rebound from freshman defenseman Emma Buckles to light the lamp. This scoreline would hold until the final two minutes of the game, when Gilmore found her second of the night on an empty net with 1:13 to play after St. Lawrence pulled their goalie. Gilmore’s two goals bring her tally up to 32 points on the year, an impressive haul for the freshman who leads the team in points.
The Saints got one back 30 seconds later to pull the score back to 2-1, but this proved to be too late in the game to mount a comeback. The Crimson was able to withstand the constant pressure on their goal to secure an important victory on the road.
“It’s never good when the opponent outshoots you, but if you can get through that adversity and capitalize, and play the defensive zone well, you can minimize their chances.” Gilmore said. “It was a pretty good game for us, a solid win against a ranked team definitely gave us some confidence.”
—Staff writer Eamon J. McLoughlin can be reached at email@example.com.
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